First Day of Qualifying

The draw for Australia is as follows (Group B or the Group of Hearts)

Monday 25th March

  1. Singapore 
  2. Netherlands Youth
  3. Netherlands Schools
  4. England
  5. Germany

Tuesday 26th March

  1. Ireland
  2. Norway
  3. Belgium
  4. Finland
  5. Hungary
  6. Latvia


At the conclusion of the group stage of 11 matches, the top 6 proceed to intermediate Final A with full carry over of results from the other teams that also qualify for the Intermediate final

(ie. 5 match results).


Round 1


Australia vs Singapore                                    4              49           which converts to            0.24        19.76

                                                                                                                Current position 12th

A disappointing start to the event.


The result did not really reflect the bridge played.

Except for a save against a non-making game which cost 13 imps, a lot of the losses were reasonable games bid and not making when they were not bid in the other room.

Sometimes aggressive, yet reasonable action, can come unstuck when the cards lie poorly.


Board 7 in the match shown on BBO was very interesting.

In Australia’s match, this board represented a 2 imp pickup when overtricks were achieved in a game EW.



Now West had an awkward decision to make. He had opened 1 and the Q and J were worthless and with his partner ostensibly having four s, his defensive capabilities were very limited to say the least [especially for an opening bid]. He knew 5 would be cheap but eventually passed.


Perhaps East should have bid 3 showing a cue raise in s rather than 2NT which shows a 4 card raise invitational or better. This might have stopped South competing and helped West with any later decisions.


They lost on the board anyway as 4 made in the other room.

Round 2


Australia vs Netherlands Youth                  14           24           which converts to            6.57        13.43

                                                                                                                Current position 12th


An improvement on the result of the first match but still not what was expected.


An interesting hand in this round was Board 12.

On the BBO screen, Poland were playing Austria.

The question was can you get to 6?





It is unclear what the Austrian auction showed but they avoided the lead in 3NT but still had the same 11 tricks.

In the Australian match, this board was flat in 3NT.

Board 14 was interesting in the Australian match.


Partner opens 2 weak first set nil vulnerable (could be 5 cards only)

The next hand bids 3

Matt Smith choose 4 and the bidding continued 4 pass pass and he then doubled to collect 300.

This was a pickup as 3 was down one  -50 at the other table. 

From his holding he was expecting a bid on his left and he wanted it to be 4, not 3.  The double was based on declarer having few outside tricks. This was well reasoned and a deserved pickup.


Round 3


Australia vs Netherlands Schools               35           19           which converts to            15.05     4.95

                                                                                                                Current position 10th


This was a good match against the youngsters.


Round 4


Australia vs England                                        28           6              which converts to            16.39     3.61

                                                                                                                Current position 7th


Even though I was born in England (yes, I am one of those p…. people), Australians always circle any contest against England as a must win encounter.


Round 5


Australia vs Germany                                     32           9              which converts to            16.78     3.22

                                                                                                                Current position 5th



At the end of the first day, with 5 of the 11 matches played, Australia is lying in a qualifying position.

The scores have been increasing each round. This trend is unlikely to continue of course but is still very pleasing to recover from such a poor start.

The current standings in the ‘Hearts’ group are



Netherlands Youth






Netherlands Schools





In the ‘Diamonds’ group, the main Netherlands team is leading quite comfortably now.

Posted by Chris on Tuesday, 26 March 2019 at 10:43